Saturday, April 26, 2008

Obama Digs the Corps

That sound you just heard? 'Twas nothing but thousands of active and retired Marines throwing up.

Here's the story, if you even care. Imagine with me the telephone conversation made to secure that t-shirt:

Um, hi...This is Allie Jenkins. I'm with the Barack Obama campaign? Do know, military t-shirts?

Cool...I'm looking for one that has the letters U. S. M. C. Do you have something like that?

You do? Excellent. And if you don't mind, my boss, like, totally threw this task at me at the last minute. So I don't even know...What does, those letters stand for?

[Gasp] Really?? Wow. That's like Well, anyway...What about colors?

That's it? Just gray? My boss said something earth tone, or sky blue...

Oh. I see. At least it won't clash, I guess. Okay...One last thing. What about the material? We'd like to get something made from fair trade organic hemp if possible.

Bummer, man...But do you know anything about the factory in Bangladesh?

Why are you laughing?

Oh. [giggle] Right. [giggle] Everything's a cause...psst! [whisper] Don't tell anyone I said that.

[giggle] You're very cool for a dude who sells military stuff.

[giggle] That one was like totally over my head. [giggle] Anyway...It is like so past the start of happy hour. I guess I'll go ahead and take the gray in an extra-large.

Wha...? Just one is fine. I can't imagine the Senator needing any spares.

Hmm? Oh...Yeah. We're heading to the Stagger Inn. Do you know it?

Cool. We'll be there about 6ish. So absolutely...Drop by.

Sure. Uh...Let's see. I have brown hair and will be wearing...

How did you guess? It's pink tie-dyed, and his head is like this cool rain foresty green. The back has "Endless Revolution" printed in this really cool, like, old school commie font.

The back? Oh...I guess it's know...a figure of speech, or something...So I'll see you there?

Rockin'. And yeah, bring the shirt. But don't wear one!!

[giggle] No, you perv [giggle]. I meant a USMC one!...Anyway, just my lame-o sense of humor.

[giggle] Right...I'm much funnier in person [giggle]. Smart ass [giggle]...So you're thinking 7:00 or so?

Cool. Yeah, me too. We'll see you then.

Wednesday, April 23, 2008

Jesus, the Son unknown assailant, possibly of Roman origin.

The director of Basic Instinct, heretofore known for introducing Sharon Stone's crotch with the world, is writing a book. It's about Jesus and puts forth theory of his conception. Via FoxNews...
In his upcoming biography of Jesus, "Basic Instinct" director Paul Verhoeven will make the shocking claim that Christ probably was the son of Mary and a Roman soldier who raped her during the Jewish uprising in Galilee, according to the Hollywood Reporter.
Curiously the story neglects to mention the swarms of Methodist ministers and Franciscan nuns rioting and calling for the author's severed head. Perhaps CNN reports on that angle. Regardless, I for one hope Mr. Verhoeven continues to live a productive life. He has movies yet to make, and Sharon Stone's not getting any younger.

Tuesday, April 22, 2008

Our Holy Redeemer?

Caroline Glick, writing in today's Jerusalem Post, has the money quote of the presidential campaign to date:

"Opponents of [Hillary] Clinton claim that she is a soulless woman who will do whatever is necessary to have power, because she likes power and wants it. But if this is true it is hard to see why a power-hungry president is worse than a president who believes that he is the people's redeemer. It is hard to see why a leader who wants power because she likes power is less reasonable than a president who thinks he has a right to demand that the American people follow his lead and fix their souls in the name of unity. In the former case, opposition to the leader is a policy dispute. In the latter case, it is apostasy.

"When someone wants power for power's sake, that person tends to be fairly pragmatic. In his first term of office, when former president Bill Clinton - another consummate pragmatist who liked having power - understood his wife's healthcare plan was about to be defeated overwhelmingly by Congress, he shelved the plan and cut his losses.

"A messianic wouldn't do that. When a messianic leader is faced with failure, his tendency is to castigate the people, or his political opposition, or the media as evil and to continue on unmoved and bring his country down with him. President Woodrow Wilson's unpopular and unsuccessful championing of US membership in the League of Nations and former president Jimmy Carter's wooing of American enemies in the name of peace are examples of what happens when messianic redeemer types are confronted with reality.

"So with this distinction between the two senators in mind, the question is, how will a President Hillary Clinton or a President Barack Obama respond after being shown that appeasement of the Palestinians has once again failed and that appeasement or deterrence of the Iranian regime has also failed once again? Given their distinct emotional makeup, it can be assumed that Obama will argue that reality is wrong and continue on - Carter-like - into the abyss and drag his country and Israel down with him. Acting in a Clinton-like way, Clinton on the other hand, would be more likely to pick a fight with Serbia - or call for a federal ban on chewing tobacco in a bid to change the subject.

I'll add a big...uh...amen to that. Oh, and I suppose the standard "read the whole thing" exhortation is appropriate.

Friday, April 18, 2008

Playing the age card

Hot on the heels of his command performance in the April 16 Pennsylvania debate, Barack Obama powerfully refutes accusations about his association with another controversial figure....

I was only 26 years old when that Brawley thing happened.

I was only 30 years old when that Crown Heights Riot thing happened.

I was only 34 when that Freddy's Fashion Mart thing happened.

Flipped out

I suppose the proper reaction of a sober-minded and serious blogger to the latest Obamadrama should be a general tsk-tsking joined with a lamentation of the state of our political discourse. Rest assured that if I find such a blogger, I'll include the link.

My immediate purpose, on the other hand, is to post the story below and allow you to join me in a good, old-fashioned guffaw over the shambles which has become the Democratic presidential nominating process.

From FoxNews:

Just when you thought the Democratic race couldn’t get uglier, Barack Obama is being accused of giving Hillary Clinton the finger at a town hall meeting in North Carolina.

The gesture — which may have been an innocent scratch of the face or, according to some, something more mischievous — came as Obama was complaining Thursday about the debate in Philadelphia the night before.

Bloggers were quick to note that as the Illinois senator scolded his Democratic rival for her performance at the debate, he raised his right hand and scratched his cheek with one finger. That finger.

“This is one of those political moments that really needs few words,” wrote the Los Angeles Times in a blog. “He’ll no doubt deny it later, but that mischievous smile seems to confirm plenty. And the crowd sure sees something.”

And now, the photographic evidence:

Saturday, April 12, 2008

Bong hit beatitudes

Well the topic of the weekend seems to be Barack Obama stepping in some rhetorical doggie pooh. I actually found his comments on the bitter religious gun nuts populating our Republic unremarkable and not the least bit surprising. You see I've been following the Illinois Senator pretty closely since the summer of 2006. So I found yesterday's "gaffe" to be perfectly in line with my impression of him. In other words, what he said yesterday in San Francisco was nothing new, and his comments in no way contradicted what he really does think about Americans and American politics.

The best example I have that demonstrates the consistency of his political philosophy comes from a puff piece the Chicago Sun Times ran in October 2006. The piece highlighted Obama's deep thoughts on deep things as expressed in his blockbuster book, The Audacity of Hope: Thoughts on Reclaiming the American Dream. I have reproduced highlights from the article below. I want to stress, so that it is perfectly clear, that these are Senator Obama's own words and thoughts. They are not, I repeat NOT, the scribblings of a college sophomore showing the effects of 27 bong hits. And so I present the musings of Senator Barack Obama:

On democracy and values:
"In a country as diverse as ours, there will always be passionate arguments about how our democracy works. But our democracy might work a bit better if we recognized that all of us possess values that are worthy of respect: if liberals at least acknowledged that the recreational hunter feels the same way about his gun as they feel about their library books, and if the conservatives recognized that most women feel as protective of their right to reproductive freedom as evangelicals do of their right to worship."

On his guiding principle:
"I find myself returning again and again to my mother's simple principle -- 'How would that make you feel?' -- as a guidepost for my politics. It's not a question we ask ourselves enough, I think; as a country, we seem to be suffering from an empathy deficit.

"We wouldn't tolerate schools that don't teach, that are chronically underfunded and understaffed and underinspired, if we thought that the children in them were like our children. . . . And it's safe to assume that those in power would think longer and harder about launching a war if they envisioned their own sons and daughters in harm's way."

On political ideology:
"I reject a politics that is based solely on racial identity, gender identity, sexual orientation, or victimhood generally. I think much of what ails the inner city involves a breakdown in culture that will not be cured by money alone, and that our values and spiritual life matter at least as much as our GDP."

On phony politicians:
"Nothing is more transparent than inauthentic expressions of faith -- such as the politician who shows up at a black church around election time and claps (off rhythm) to the gospel choir or sprinkles in a few biblical citations to spice up a thoroughly dry policy speech."

On foreign policy:
"Why invade Iraq and not North Korea or Burma? Why intervene in Bosnia and not Darfur? Are our goals in Iran regime change, the dismantling of all Iranian nuclear capability, the prevention of nuclear proliferation, or all three? . . . Perhaps someone in the White House has clear answers to these questions. But our allies -- and for that matter our enemies -- certainly don't know what those answers are. More important, neither do the American people."

On his first impressions of President Bush:
"I had found the president to be a likable man, shrewd and disciplined but with the same straightforward manner that had helped him win two elections; you could easily imagine him owning the local car dealership down the street, coaching Little League, and grilling in his backyard -- the kind of guy who would make for good company so long as the conversation revolved around sports or kids."

On many Americans' yearning for spiritual connection:
"They want a sense of purpose, a narrative arc to their lives, something that will relieve a chronic loneliness or lift them above the exhausting, relentless toll of daily life. They need an assurance that somebody out there cares about them, is listening to them -- that they are not just destined to travel down a long highway toward nothingness. "If I have any insight into this movement toward a deepening of religious commitment, perhaps it's because it's a road I have traveled."

Wednesday, April 09, 2008

Reality-based education

Via Michael Goldfarb, the Carnagie Mellon student newspaper, the Tartan, offers this picture of higher learning:

While the crowd was indeed diverse, some students at the event questioned thepractices of Mrs. Obama’s event coordinators, who handpicked the crowd sitting behind Mrs. Obama. The Tartan’s correspondents observed one event coordinator say to another, “Get me more white people, we need more white people.” To an Asian girl sitting in the back row, one coordinator said, “We’re moving you, sorry. It’s going to look so pretty, though.”

“I didn’t know they would say, ‘We need a white person here,’ ” said attendee and senior psychology major Shayna Watson, who sat in the crowd behind Mrs. Obama. “I understood they would want a show of diversity, but to pick up people and to reseat them, I didn’t know it would be so outright.”

And so one college student comes to grips with the true meaning of "diversity."

Monday, April 07, 2008

Le jackass

Look. What the Chinese have done to Tibet over the past half century or so is truly abominable. And certainly keeping world attention focused in a squirm-inducing fashion on the ChiComs is a good thing. Unfortunately, however, the sorts of people engaging in many of the public protests seem little removed from the rock hurling/window bashing delinquents seen outside WTO meetings. I suppose they must want Tibet to be free not to engage in international trade agreements. Anyway...Get a load of this AP photo from Paris today (via FoxNews):

Now as you may have heard, protesters in London over the weekend, and today in Paris, have been stalking the Olympic torch as it is relayed from Greece to Beijing. In a few instances, a "Free Tibet!" partisan has snatched the torch from an official carrier's hand and extinguished the thing. Until today a Bic or Zippo has been handy to get the procession on its way again. (In response to the intensity of the protests, French officials have shut down the relay in Paris. Analysts believe this may stem from rumors of German-speaking arrestees or perhaps an unintended consequence of recent state-enforced smoking bans.)

But getting back to the photo, notice the position of the torch bearer. She's the one in the center holding the torch. She's also sitting. In a wheelchair. Here's to hoping the gendarmes gave the attacker (exiting frame, right) an extra kick in the ribs. And here's to also hoping this jackass lives with unending humiliation over being bested by 100 pound disabled woman.